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Guidelines on use of Admixtures in Concrete

Recommendation in IRS Concrete Bridge Code:


Earlier the use of admixtures in railway bridges was prohibited as per clause 4.5 of Concrete Bridge Code. The present Concrete Bridge Code for plain, reinforced and prestressed concrete for general bridge construction practices revised in 1997 (printed in 1999) has allowed the use of admixtures with the approval of Chief Engineer and the clause reads as follows:
Clause 4.4 Admixtures: The Chief Engineer may permit the use of admixtures for imparting special characteristics to the concrete or mortar on satisfactory evidence that the use of such admixtures does not adversely affect the properties of concrete or mortar particularly with respect to strength, volume change, durability and has no deleterious effect on reinforcement. Clause 4.4.1 The admixtures, when permitted, shall conform to IS:9103. Clause 4.4.2 Calcium chloride or admixtures containing calcium chloride shall not be used in structural concrete containing reinforcement, prestressing tendons or other embedded metals. Clause 4.4.3 The admixtures containing Cl. & SO3 ions shall not be used. Admixtures containing nitrates shall also not be used. Admixtures based on thiocynate may promote corrosion and therefore shall be prohibited .

Acceptance Criteria:

Chloride free concrete: Some of the properties influenced by the use of calcium chloride admixture are given as under:9 No
1. 2

Property
Setting Compressive strength

General Effect
Reduces both initial and final setting Increases significantly the compressive strength in the first 3 days of curing(gain may be about 30-100%) A slight decrease at 28 days. A decrease of about 10% at 7 days An increase of about 30% in 24 hours Reduced Aggravated.

3 4 5 6 7

Tensile strength Flexural strength Heat of hydration Resistance to sulphate attack Alkali-aggregate reaction.

Guidelines on use of Admixtures in Concrete


8 Corrosion Causes no problems in normal reinforced concrete, if adequate precautions taken. Dosage should not exceed 1.5% CaCl 2 and adequate cover to be given. Should not be used in concrete containing a combination of dissimilar metals or where there is a possibility of stray currents. Increased Increase of 0-15% reported. Early resistance improved. Improved at early ages. Increased at early ages. Reduced

9 10 11. 12. 13 14

Shrinkage and creep. Volume change Resistance to damage by freezing and thawing. Water tightness. Modulus of elasticity Bleeding

Cement contains such a small amount of chloride that it is practically undetected by ordinary methods of analysis and hence can be neglected as a source of chloride. The mix water, however, may contain chloride in the amount of about 0.005% at a water cement ratio of 0.5. This amounts to about 0.0025% chloride by weight of cement. There is also a possibility of the presence of chloride even in the so called chloride free admixtures. As concrete contains a large amount of aggregate, even small amounts of chloride inclusion would add upto a significant overall percentage of chloride. It is recommended that concrete shall not contain chloride because of their adverse effects on properties. Physical requirements: Concrete made with admixtures when compared with identical concrete made without the admixture (control sample), should meet the applicable physical requirement as given in following table -9, as per IS:9103: 1979.3
Table-9
S.N. Requirement Accelerating Admixture Retarding Admixture Water Reducing Admixture AirEntraining Admixture

Guidelines on use of Admixtures in Concrete


1. 2. Water content, percent of control sample, Mix. Time of setting, allowable deviation from control sample, hours Initial Max. Min. Final Max. Min. Compressive Strength, percent of control sample, Min 3 days 7 days 28 days 6 months 1 year Flexural strength, percent of control sample, Min. 3 days 7 days 28 days Length change, percent increase over control sample, Max. 28 days 6 months 1 year Bleeding, percent increase over control sample, Max. 95 -

-3 -1 -2 -1

+3 +1 +3

+1

3.

125 100 100 90 90

90 90 90 90 90

110 110 110 100 100

90 90 90 90 90

4.

110 100 90

90 90 90

100 100 100

90 90 90

5.

0.010 0.010 0.010 5

0.010 0.010 0.010 5

0.010 0.010 0.010 5

0.010 0.010 0.010 2

6.

Test on Concrete: To ascertain the physical requirements so as to facilitate the field

Guidelines on use of Admixtures in Concrete


engineer to decide the suitability of the admixture, the following tests on concrete with and without admixtures maybe done: Test for Workability: The workability of freshly mixed concrete in terms of slump or compaction factor shall determine according to method given in IS: 1199. Test for Air Content: Air content of freshly mixed concrete shall be determined by the pressure method given in IS: 1199 Test for Time Of Setting: Time of setting, initial and final, shall be determined as given in IS:8142 Test for Bleeding: Bleeding shall be computed as a percentage of net amounts of mixing water in the concrete. The net amount of mixing water is the water in excess of that present as absorbed water in the aggregate. Absorbed water in the aggregate shall be determined as given in IS:2386(Part III). The test shall be carried out in accordance with the details given in Appendix A of IS:9103. Test for Water Contents: The water cement ratio of the concrete shall be determined to the nearest 0.001, and shall be as follows; Net water content of the batch shall be computed by determining the absorption water of aggregate as given in IS:2386(Part III) Mass of cement per unit volume of concrete shall be computed as given in IS:1199. Water cement ratio shall be determined by dividing the net mass of water content of the batch by the mass of cement in the batch. Test for Compressive Strength: Compressive strength shall be determined at each age of testing as

Guidelines on use of Admixtures in Concrete


given in IS:516. Test for Flexural Strength: Flexural strength shall be computed as given in IS:516 Test for Length Change(Drying Shrinkage): Changes in length on drying and wetting shall be determined as given in IS:1199. The moist- curing period, including the period in moulds shall be 14 days. Test for chloride: Chloride content may be determined as per the procedure given in BS1881:Part:6:1971(Para 9.1) Site Trials for Estimation of Correct Dose: Site trials are essential to decide dosages as well as efficacy of the proposed admixtures. The dosages recommended by manufacturer may be used as guide only. Site trials should be completed during formative stage of project and in any case prior to commencement of concreting activities. Keeping in mind the purpose of using admixture and the dosages recommended by manufacturer, trial should start and the slump is observed for control mix as well as for mix with admixture and dosages are decided accordingly. Trial should also be repeated with chosen dosages for loss of slump with the time. It may be noted that with the admixture rate of loss of slump is much higher than control mix. This is important in the context of time likely to be taken in placement of concrete after its mixing. Therefore, time required for transportation and placement should be estimated and target slump fixed at estimated time. Based on above target, trials should be repeated with varying dosages to get necessary slump. Using revised dosages, trials should also be conducted to get 28 days strength with admixtures. Simultaneously, control mix cube is also made. If targeted strength is achieved, dosages are finally decided.

Guidelines on use of Admixtures in Concrete


During progress of the projects the trials may have to be repeated if there is any change in type or source of cement etc. Precautions: i) ii) iii) iv) v) Chloride content should be invariably checked for prestressed concrete and RCC to ensure that the admixture is chloride free. Self life should be monitored continuously. All containers should be correctly leveled. Reliable liquid dispenser for liquid admixtures should be used and calibrated. It is relatively easy to verify specific gravity as claimed by manufacturer. This will indicate defect at first hand. Manufacturer should be asked to furnish adequate technical data such as : a. b. c. d. e. Additional influences whether detrimental or beneficial Potential occupational hazards for the user. Presence of detrimental substances like chloride, sulphates, sugar etc. Recommended dosages, preparation and procedure to be used. Any other data.